Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Brad
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Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby Brad » Tue Jul 03, 2018 2:31 pm

Welcome to the round 1.16 of Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018... last group of Round 1!

Vote for your favorite album in each match-up.
Remember, anyone can vote as long as the voter has heard both albums.

Good-spirited comments are encouraged, but not absolutely necessary.
Deadline = July 10th at 10am EST.

Here's a link to the bracket for the entire tournament:
http://www.bracketmaker.com/tlist.cfm?tid=469154">Moderately%20Acclaimed%20Albums%209%20(2018)

Match-ups:
1. Pet Shop Boys - Actually vs. Muse - Origin of Symmetry
2. Florence + The Machine - How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful vs. Lady Gaga - The Fame Monster
3. Damien Rice - My Favorite Faded Fantasy vs. Meade ‘Lux’ Lewis - Cat House Piano
4. Lady Lamb - After vs. Philip Glass - Akhnaten


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Dig it for a starter
Last edited by Brad on Tue Jul 10, 2018 1:24 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Bang Jan
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Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby Bang Jan » Tue Jul 03, 2018 2:46 pm



2 | Pet Shop Boys | Actually
7 | Muse | Origin of Symmetry

5 | Florence + The Machine | How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful
6 | Lady Gaga | The Fame Monster 

8 | Damien Rice | My Favourite Faded Fantasy
3 | Meade ‘Lux’ Lewis | Cat House Piano

4 | Lady Lamb | After
1 | Philip Glass | Akhnaten

Favourite song of the week: Philip Glass | Funeral of Amenhotep III
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Re: Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby StevieFan13 » Tue Jul 03, 2018 4:08 pm

1. Pet Shop Boys - Actually
2. Florence + The Machine - How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful
3. Damien Rice - My Favorite Faded Fantasy
4. Lady Lamb - After (I don't like Philip Glass much at all)
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Re: Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby DaveC » Tue Jul 03, 2018 7:29 pm

1. Muse - Origin of Symmetry
2. Florence + The Machine - How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful
3. Damien Rice - My Favorite Faded Fantasy
4. Lady Lamb - After

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Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby Honorio » Tue Jul 03, 2018 7:57 pm



4. Pet Shop Boys - Actually (1987) vs. 7. Muse - Origin of Symmetry (2001)
5. Florence + The Machine - How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful (2015) vs. 8. Lady Gaga - The Fame Monster (2009)
2. Damien Rice - My Favourite Faded Fantasy (2014) vs. 1. Meade Lux Lewis - Cat House Piano (1956)
6. Lady Lamb - After (2015) vs. 3. Philip Glass - Akhnaten (1987)

Favourite song from every album:
It's a Sin | New Born | Ship to Wreck | Telephone | The Box | Joe Prein's Boogie | Billions of Eyes | Funeral of Amenhotep III

Favourite song of the week: The Box

In a week filled by albums with overblown arrangements I'm giving the top position to "Cat House Piano," an album of extreme simplicity but with the intact freshness of the boogie woogie piano playing.

I got the second batch of ladies pictures selected but I think I'll wait to post them after the results, not forcing to scroll down the whole thread after every new list.

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Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby Romain » Tue Jul 03, 2018 8:07 pm

1. Muse - Origin of Symmetry
2. Florence + The Machine - How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful
3. Damien Rice - My Favorite Faded Fantasy/b]
4. [b]Philip Glass - Akhnaten

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Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby acroamor » Wed Jul 04, 2018 12:42 am

I haven’t been voting in this game this time around but I just want to chime in to say a big thank you to whoever nominated After. One of my favorite albums of the past few years.

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Re: Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby Jirin » Wed Jul 04, 2018 3:35 am

Actually 82 - Original of Symmetry 61
How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful 74 - The Fame Monster 67
Akhnaten 84 - After 81
My favorite faded fantasy 84 - Cat House Piano 79

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Rob
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Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby Rob » Wed Jul 04, 2018 12:07 pm

acroamor wrote:I haven’t been voting in this game this time around but I just want to chime in to say a big thank you to whoever nominated After. One of my favorite albums of the past few years.


You're welcome. I really love Lady Lamb, one of the most unique artists of the current time.
But it might likely end up to be my only nomination that won't make it out of the first round alive.

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Re: Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby FrankLotion » Fri Jul 06, 2018 1:40 pm

1. Pet Shop Boys - Actually
2. Lady Gaga - The Fame Monster
3. Meade “Lux” Lewis - Cat House Piano
4. Lady Lamb - After

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Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby PlasticRam » Sat Jul 07, 2018 9:53 pm

1. Pet Shop Boys - Actually vs. Muse - Origin of Symmetry
I feel like that

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Re: Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby hectorthebat » Sun Jul 08, 2018 11:50 am

1. Pet Shop Boys - Actually vs. Muse - Origin of Symmetry
2. Florence + The Machine - How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful vs. Lady Gaga - The Fame Monster
3. Damien Rice - My Favorite Faded Fantasy vs. Meade ‘Lux’ Lewis - Cat House Piano
4. Lady Lamb - After vs. Philip Glass - Akhnaten

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Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby Rob » Mon Jul 09, 2018 7:32 pm

The last week of round 1, and sadly one of the weaker line-ups in my opinion. But it comes with a personal favorite!

8. Florence + The Machine – How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful
In a previous game I already expressed my dislike of this album’s single Ship to Wreck and that opinion stands. Turns out that I didn’t like the surrounding album much either. I’ve liked some of Florence’s songs at least a little, but this album just sounds uninspired, which leaves nothing for Florence to do than to belt, whether she needs to or not. It’s the most stereotypical ballad type pop album I can imagine, of a kind that makes Adele’s 21 seem like Trout Mask Replica. I guess it is solidly performed, but I’ll be damned if I can think of a single reason why this deserves to be in the top 3000 albums on AM, when thousands of more unique albums are not, including many from the same year. But a lot of people seem to love this, so the problem is probably me.

7. Meade ‘Lux’ Lewis – Cat House Piano
Another album that fails a little to stand out. It starts of strong with The Pittsburgh Flyer, a truly swinging boogie. After that it just kind of goes along, without ever quite feeling as alive as the opening track. It’s a bit hard to put my finger on it, but it feels like Lewis lacks a bit of his own personality. There is little here that separates him from other jazz pianists and he doesn’t quite seem to be in their league.

6. Lady Gaga – The Fame Monster
As someone who isn’t that much into pop I have to say that Bad Romance is one hell of a pop song. I have it in my top 1000, as rare song of its kind. Alejandro and Telephone are very good too. The rest is solid, but to me it can’t help but feel like filler for the singles. Maybe I’m not a fan enough of this style to appreciate these deep cuts. Luckily Lady Gaga has one of the best voices of modern pop and that takes her a long way, even if few of her songs make the most of it.

5. Philip Glass – Akhnaten
In general I like Philip Glass a lot, so I was looking forward to this work of his that I wasn’t yet familiar with. It turns out to be a mixed bag. It starts out great with Act 1, which has an epic sound and a sense of big drama that befits it’s subject matter. But immediately when Act 2 begins things start to go south. Immediately from Scene 1, Temple, the whole project becomes an unintended parody of Philip Glass operas. The way it repeats its epic vocals almost infinitely without any sense of real drama is ridiculous and frankly annoying. Maybe something really amazing happens on stage at the time, but without visuals it is baffling. And the same trick gets returns on several tracks. Some repetition belongs to the genre, but damn, it becomes a slog after two hours. Every now and then the more well-earned grandeur of the first act returns, but something is broken beyond repair. Also, the spoken-sung monologues are very, very silly.

4. Muse – Origin of Symmetry
Continuing this long streak of disappointing uneven albums, we now get to Muse’s Origin of Symmetry, which almost feels like a conscious attempt to make a frontloaded album. Everything up to and including Plug-In Baby feels like an exhilarating rush. Love or hate Muse, but they know how to make a futuristic rollercoaster ride out of music. And then, after Plug-In Baby, nothing. Okay, the cover of Feeling Good is pretty interesting and works well, but their own tracks are devoid of the excitement that makes the first half so special. Would have made a great EP.

3. Damien Rice – My Favorite Faded Fantasy
Breaking this week’s uneven curse is Damien Rice, who makes a very consistent sounding album – almost to a fault. This is Rice and if you know his previous work you won’t find any real surprises, but it works. These are well-written and soulfully performed singer-songwriter songs. Only for the fans I suspect, but I like his style, so I am good.

2. Pet Shop Boys – Actually
It is rare that the first truly strong album comes in at only #2, but here we are. I’ve long liked the Pet Shop Boys, who added more sonic playfulness and lyrical depth than their contemporaries in the dance scene. This album is filled with memorable tracks and I like that the biggest singles were actually the most unique ones, like the magnificent It’s a Sin and Rent. Only Heart feels like your average 80’s synth track and I don’t even dislike that one.

1. Lady Lamb – After
My own nomination, as stated before. Yes, there are three tracks here that are just kind of there: Sunday Shoes, Milk Dude and Ten, but that doesn’t make it a good example of an uneven album, because 1. I love everything else too much – really every other song is a favourite; and 2. Lady Lamb performs in a very flawed style, which resists perfection, which makes a couple of only-okay songs seem rather right. This is a woman who veers from one emotion or tempo to the next without warning and who doesn’t care about singing off-key, making off-putting noises or making her guitar sound like it’s having a mental breakdown. The whole album feels unhinged, but that is fitting as it is a sort of ode to instability, mood swings and all the nervous wrecks out there. Her previous album, Ripely Pine, which contains personal top 10 song Bird Balloons, already had these elements, but this one has even more great songs. Obviously, I love it.

My votes in a simple overview:
1. Pet Shop Boys - Actually vs. Muse - Origin of Symmetry
2. Florence + The Machine - How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful vs. Lady Gaga - The Fame Monster
3. Damien Rice - My Favorite Faded Fantasy vs. Meade ‘Lux’ Lewis - Cat House Piano
4. Lady Lamb - After vs. Philip Glass - Akhnaten

So now I reviewed every album in this game. Since there is no point for me in doing it again in the next round I'll mostly just vote and only comment if I have something new to say. Hope people enjoyed these write-ups a bit. They were mostly personal reflections, so I hope you didn't mind some of the more negative reviews.

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Re: Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby FrankLotion » Mon Jul 09, 2018 8:45 pm

Also can we talk about how awesome Vena Cava is? I’m pretty sure that’s still one of my top-played songs and it’s been years now, Rest if After is great too!

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Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby acroamor » Mon Jul 09, 2018 8:46 pm

Rob wrote:1. Lady Lamb – After
My own nomination, as stated before. Yes, there are three tracks here that are just kind of there: Sunday Shoes, Milk Dude and Ten, but that doesn’t make it a good example of an uneven album, because 1. I love everything else too much – really every other song is a favourite; and 2. Lady Lamb performs in a very flawed style, which resists perfection, which makes a couple of only-okay songs seem rather right. This is a woman who veers from one emotion or tempo to the next without warning and who doesn’t care about singing off-key, making off-putting noises or making her guitar sound like it’s having a mental breakdown. The whole album feels unhinged, but that is fitting as it is a sort of ode to instability, mood swings and all the nervous wrecks out there. Her previous album, Ripely Pine, which contains personal top 10 song Bird Balloons, already had these elements, but this one has even more great songs. Obviously, I love it.


Fascinating to see this take on the album, considering "Sunday Shoes" is my favorite of the songs - absolutely pristine lyrically - and "Milk Duds" is top five. Also, I realize now - were you the one who nominated "Bird Balloons" for a forum game a few years ago? If so, I have you to thank for introducing me to her. Perfect song, and also a personal top 10.

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Re: Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby Brad » Tue Jul 10, 2018 2:13 am

My picks:
1. Pet Shop Boys - Actually vs. Muse - Origin of Symmetry
2. Florence + The Machine - How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful vs. Lady Gaga - The Fame Monster
3. Damien Rice - My Favorite Faded Fantasy vs. Meade ‘Lux’ Lewis - Cat House Piano
4. Lady Lamb - After vs. Philip Glass - Akhnaten

12 hours left to vote!

Results may be delayed slightly due to Vacation (mine).

Thanks!

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Re: Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby andyd1010 » Tue Jul 10, 2018 2:27 am

1. Muse - Origin of Symmetry
2. Florence + The Machine - How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful

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Re: Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby Sweepstakes Ron » Tue Jul 10, 2018 5:44 am

1. Pet Shop Boys - Actually vs. Muse - Origin of Symmetry
2. Florence + The Machine - How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful vs. Lady Gaga - The Fame Monster
3. Damien Rice - My Favorite Faded Fantasy vs. Meade ‘Lux’ Lewis - Cat House Piano
4. Lady Lamb - After vs. Philip Glass - Akhnaten

I can't believe I listen to all 128... Thanks for all this, Brad!
Feelin' good on a Wednesday

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Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby Rob » Tue Jul 10, 2018 7:41 am

acroamor wrote: Also, I realize now - were you the one who nominated "Bird Balloons" for a forum game a few years ago? If so, I have you to thank for introducing me to her. Perfect song, and also a personal top 10.


Yes, that was me. My #6 of all time! I think that song didn't even win the first round, so I'm glad someone really took to it.
I voted for three songs from After in my top 1000: Violet Clementine, Heretic and Billions of Eyes. Batter and Vena Cave came close, so these would round up the top 5 of this album for me.

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Re: Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby Gillingham » Tue Jul 10, 2018 8:47 am

3. Damien Rice - My Favorite Faded Fantasy vs. Meade ‘Lux’ Lewis - Cat House Piano

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Re: Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby Kingoftonga » Tue Jul 10, 2018 1:44 pm

Winners in red:

1. Pet Shop Boys - Actually vs. Muse - Origin of Symmetry
2. Florence + The Machine - How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful vs. Lady Gaga - The Fame Monster
4. Lady Lamb - After vs. Philip Glass - Akhnaten

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Re: Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby Brad » Tue Jul 10, 2018 2:00 pm

15 voters this week:
andyd1010
Bang Jan
Brad
DaveC
FrankLotion
Gillingham
hectorthebat
Honorio
Jirin
Kingoftonga
PlasticRam
Rob
Romain
StevieFan13
Sweepstakes Ron

Winners:
1. Pet Shop Boys - Actually over Muse - Origin of Symmetry 9-5
2. Florence + The Machine - How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful over Lady Gaga - The Fame Monster 9-4
3. Meade ‘Lux’ Lewis - Cat House Piano over Damien Rice - My Favorite Faded Fantasy 7-6 (OT)
4. Philip Glass - Akhnaten over Lady Lamb - After 7-5

We have a TIE!
Damien Rice - My Favorite Faded Fantasy vs. Meade ‘Lux’ Lewis - Cat House Piano ***Tie! 6-6 Next vote from someone who has not already voted in this match-up wins!***
Last edited by Brad on Tue Jul 10, 2018 4:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Rob
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Re: Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby Rob » Tue Jul 10, 2018 3:50 pm

Aw, just at the finish line one of my albums doesn't make it to the next round. Oh well, my other six are still in.

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Re: Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby PlasticRam » Tue Jul 10, 2018 3:54 pm

3. Damien Rice - My Favorite Faded Fantasy vs. Meade ‘Lux’ Lewis - Cat House Piano
I feel like that

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Honorio
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Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby Honorio » Tue Jul 10, 2018 8:07 pm

Rob wrote:Hope people enjoyed these write-ups a bit. They were mostly personal reflections, so I hope you didn't mind some of the more negative reviews.

Of course, Rob, I've enjoyed your reviews a lot! Thank you very much for that! Also thanks to Bang Jan for the playlists and of course to Brad for the hosting…

And now the ladies of the second part…


Carrie Brownstein, Janet Weiss and Corin Tucker (Sleater-Kinney)


Julia Holter


Karen Grotberg (The Jayhawks)


Neko Case (The New Pornographers)


Phillipa Soo, Renée Elise Goldsberry and Jasmine Cephas Jones (Hamilton Broadway Cast)


Victoria Legrand (Beach House)


Valerie Cooper (Sweet Trip)


Brody Dalle (The Distillers)


Brix Smith (The Fall)


Alison Krauss, Sharon and Cheryl White (The Whites), Gillian Welch, Emmylou Harris, Sarah, Hannah and Leah Peasall, Evelyn, Lynn and Suzanne Cox (The Cox Family)


Shelley LaFreniere and Suzi Ziegler (Game Theory)


Yoshimi P-We (Boredoms)


Kim Deal (Pixies)


Karin Dreijer (The Knife)


Eve Morris (Lavender Country)


Jennie Benford (Songs: Ohia)


Lizzi Bougatsos (Gang Gang Dance)


Aude Challéat (Le Sacre du Tympan)


Claudia Gonson (The Magnetic Fields)


Danielle Brisebois (New Radicals)


Erykah Badu


Jenni Koivistoinen (Paavoharju)


Dolly Parton


Florence Welch and Isabella Summers (Florence + The Machine)


Lady Gaga


Lady Lamb

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Re: Re: Moderately Acclaimed Albums 2018 - Round 1.16

Postby DaveC » Tue Jul 10, 2018 8:18 pm

Rob wrote:Aw, just at the finish line one of my albums doesn't make it to the next round. Oh well, my other six are still in.


Sorry to see Lady lamb miss the cut. According to my count, I have all seven of my nominations in round 2. I've enjoyed your reviews Rob and agreed with most and understood those few I didn't agree with.


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